Metascore
51

Mixed or average reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 27
  2. Negative: 1 out of 27
  1. The movie has a sweetness and innocence that makes it near perfect entertainment for its target audience.
  2. A bright and breezy tween fantasy romantic comedy that coasts along on its charming performances and the light comedic touch of first-time feature director Elizabeth Allen.
  3. 70
    Undemanding, unsurprising and really quite charming within conventional limits, Elizabeth Allen’s tween-coming-of-age feature debut is as realist as can be, given that, of the three nice Florida girls who need to grow up in the movie, the eponymous heroine (Sara Paxton) is a high-achieving blond mermaid with vaguely feminist leanings, a twitchy blue tail and the comic timing of an up-and-coming Cameron Diaz.
  4. Reviewed by: Joe Leydon
    70
    Result is an unusually likeable family-friendly comedy.
  5. Refreshingly, the movie never wavers in the importance it places on friendship over just about anything else.
  6. It's not the best "Little Mermaid" movie - it's totally predictable and its trio of tweeners squeal at a pitch that could break glass. But it's also a bubbly confection about best friends, crushes on preening lifeguards, grrrl power and shades-of-blue fashion tips.
  7. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    63
    It's high-spirited, innocent fun.
  8. Despite corny one-liners and plot developments that don't always hold water, Aquamarine rises above the flotsam filling theaters this time of year with a likable tale of friendship and charming performances.
  9. 63
    Unique because it's the rare movie that fiercely respects the altruistic loyalty that bonds girls to one another.
  10. 63
    Won't win points for originality, but the screenplay includes some snappy dialogue, smart observations, and an uplifting message about the importance of friendship.
  11. Reviewed by: Anna Smith
    60
    This fantasy comedy should entertain its pre-teen female market – and repel those silly superficial boys (swoon).
  12. Reviewed by: Neil Genzlinger
    60
    Ms. Paxton isn't quite as magnetic as a movie mermaid ought to be, but the two buddies are a treat to watch, especially Ms. Roberts, showing the genes of her Aunt Julia.
  13. That everything gets worked out -- friendship affirmed, jokes made about silly magazine articles on reeling in a boy -- is as sure as the soundtrack's inclusion of a Mandy Moore song.
  14. This is a totally predictable exercise if you're not in the target market.
  15. 50
    The movie is awfully sweet. The young actresses playing eighth-graders look their age, for once, and have an unstudied charm.
  16. Like its title heroine, it's sparkly, pretty and flirty--but often all wet.
  17. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    50
    Aside from an inspired bit involving a pair of sycophantic starfish, it's amazing how unimaginative a movie about a mermaid can be, and it's sad how thoroughly its girl-power stylings devolve into a muddle of mixed messages.
  18. Simultaneously salacious and sugary.
  19. The film robs mermaids of everything exotic and remarkable about them in mythology.
  20. Reviewed by: Winda Benedetti
    50
    If "Splash" was a movie for grownups and "The Little Mermaid" was a film for kids, it's safe to say that the latest flick to feature a mermaid is aimed directly at those who are neither adults nor children, but rather lost somewhere in that awkward middle zone in between.
  21. Reviewed by: Gregg Rickman
    50
    Aquamarine will likely please its undemanding tween audience--especially if today's kids are as unsavvy a crew as 20th Century Fox seems to think.
  22. 50
    Aquamarine is better than nothing for its woefully underserved audience.
  23. The story has its hokey moments ("There's something very fishy about that girl"), but the sincerity and focus of the storytelling compensate.
  24. 42
    Adapted (and significantly reshaped) from a young-adult book by novelist Alice Hoffman, Aquamarine has the tossed-off quality of an ABC Family TV movie. Its lessons come pre-digested.
  25. But for what it is, I think it's pretty okay. It's not going to win an Oscar or anything. But I liked how it was actually made for tween girls.
  26. Reviewed by: Gregg Rickman
    40
    The film's true focus is the friendship between the two girls, although this tends to get lost between Elizabeth Allen's jittery direction and the screenplay's contrivances.
  27. It would seem that Allen and screenwriters John Quaintance and Jessica Bendinger couldn't decide between making a movie about the summer that 'tweens become teens or "Scenes From a Mal"l for the MTV set.
User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 63 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 11
  2. Negative: 3 out of 11
  1. Jul 3, 2013
    5
    Emma Roberts, Jojo, and Sara Paxton are pretty good as the leads, but overall, Aquamarine is one of those films that can best be described asEmma Roberts, Jojo, and Sara Paxton are pretty good as the leads, but overall, Aquamarine is one of those films that can best be described as mediocre. Full Review »
  2. Zal
    Jan 13, 2012
    4
    I didn't expect to like this movie and, lo and behold, I didn't. The dialogue is unbearably stupid, the premise is executed poorly, theI didn't expect to like this movie and, lo and behold, I didn't. The dialogue is unbearably stupid, the premise is executed poorly, the characters are generic and boring the acting is mediocre at best and...I'm sorry but mermaids can just grow legs whenever they come on land? Are you kidding? All the negative reviews I've read talk about how ugly the main two actresses are. First of all, even if you don't find them that attractive, that's a very petty reason for not liking them. And secondly, I think they're pretty. My beef with them is that their acting in this film is bad.
    Technically, I should hate this movie, but I don't. Know why? Because, damn it, it has an incredible ending! That climax is one of the best I have ever seen. I can easily say that I did not see it coming. It actually worked well. And while it does not make up for the other flaws that this movie has, I still thought it was brilliant.
    I've read the short story that this was based on and even though it has been a while and I do not remember all of the details, I found it to be more compelling. For one thing, Aquamarine can't just sprout legs whenever she wants. She's stuck as a mermaid, so both girls place her in a wheelchair and cover her tail. This is a pretty clever idea. I also didn't find the two leads to be that aggravating. Also, the motivation for helping Aqua is different. In the book, the girls are worried that Aqua will die if they don't get her to the ocean in time but she does not want to leave until she spends time with Raymon, so the girls agree to set up a date. In the movie, the motivation is more selfish. Keeping up with the BS mythology, if you help a mermaid, you get a wish, and their wish is to stop one of them from moving. In the book, both girls are in a similar predicament when one of them has to move but they work through it.
    Overall, the movie is dumb and not well made but It has a great ending. Go read the short story. I have to see if I can dig it up.
    Full Review »
  3. AlonaM.
    Oct 23, 2007
    10
    This movie is really amazing and full of fun.. it shows how important the friendship is... i really really love it!!! you rock!!!